Bobby Kromm, who won the NHL's coach of the year award with the Detroit Red Wings in 1978, has died, according to a published report.

Kromm, 82, died of complications from colon cancer, the team reported on its website.

The Calgary-born Kromm coached the Red Wings for three seasons. Detroit finished with 78 points in his first year at the helm, a 37-point improvement from the previous campaign, earning him the Jack Adams Trophy as top coach from the league.

Kromm came to the job after a highly successful turn as coach of the WHA's Winnipeg Jets. The Jets won the Avco Cup in 1976, and were runner-up the following year.

Despite coaching in the WHA, Kromm was among the coaches selected by Alan Eagleson for Canada's NHL-dominated team at the 1976 Canada Cup.

Kromm joined the likes of Scotty Bowman, Don Cherry and Al McNeil on the staff, with Canada winning the tournament.

Winning was a habit for Kromm throughout his coaching career. He led the Dallas Blackhawks to five final appearances in the Central Hockey League, including two championships.

Early in his career, Kromm spent several seasons with the Trail, B.C., Smoke Eaters, including as part of their world championship team of 1961. It would be 33 years before Canada would win the world championship again.

Kromm's son, Richard, went on to play in the NHL with Calgary and the New York Islanders in the 1980s.